Flooded Willows

I love the winter color of willows.  This location is usually dry save for a stream running through the back of the willows, but we have had so much rain that the willows and the field beside it are flooded.  The field is below:

The photo above is of the flooded field beside the willows.  This is a corn field in summer.  At this time it is another swimming hole for ducks.

The green areas are of the Somenos dike which was built to hold back the water when the field floods.  Previous to the building of the dike, there was flooding of houses in this area when heavy rains prevailed.  In December of 2018 this area saw many days of heavy rain.  I wonder how much more rain we will have this winter.


Northern Shoveler at Quamichan Lake

The photo above is of a pair of Northern Shovelers.  This dabbling duck is a large species, larger than a Mallard.  I haven’t seen them this close before and was happy to be able to photograph them.

I have been lately bemoaning the fact that many species of over-wintering waterfowl in the Cowichan Valley have not been seen by me the past couple of winters, especially at Quamichan Lake.   It was quite the shock to see several pairs of Northern Shovelers at the lake a couple of days ago.

I haven’t posted on this blog for a long time, and do hope that this post shows up in the Reader so I will be motivated to post here again.

A Red-breasted Sapsucker Visitor

A Red-breasted Sapsucker visited our back yard yesterday.  He was high up the Deodara tree when this photo was taken and you can’t see his chest so I am also including below a better photo of a Red-breasted Sapsucker that was taken near the Cowichan River.  The one in the tree was not interested in coming to the feeder but it was a treat to see it in the yard.

They are such brilliantly colored birds with great feather definition.  The one in the above photo was not shy at all,  it was at eye level near the path and I could almost walk up to it.  The photo below is a closer look at it taken while it went about its business.

For more information on Red-breasted Sapsuckers follow this link at All About Birds:


Monochrome Monday: Trumpeter Swans at Somenos Marsh

During winter Trumpeter Swans are a large part of my blogging being one of my favorite subjects during the time they are here in the Cowichan Valley.  For that reason, today’s Monochrome Monday post are a group of 5 Trumpeter Swans entering the flooded Somenos Marsh.

Moonrise New Years Eve

Just a few photos of tonight’s beautiful moonrise through trees.  These photos were taken a few seconds apart.  As the clouds moved away from the moon it became much brighter.  I think that #3 is my favorite but I like the first one as well.

Female Common Goldeneye

The photo above is of a female Common Goldeneye whose appearance is much different from the male.  This photo was taken at the river bank above Cowichan River located on the Native Reserve, a great place for over-wintering ducks and Trumpeter Swans.

Below is the photo I posted a few days ago of two male Common Goldeneye, that post was entitled Two of a Kind.  Posting it again to show the difference between male and female.


Winter Baby

This little Winter baby is the young deer featured as the icon for this blog.  This photo was taken last winter from the gate of a large farm with fields and woodlands.  The pale background is snow.  The young deer was standing in shade and watched me as long as I stood in place.  She was far enough away that a flash would not have had any effect.  I didn’t see Mother but as the farm is quite large she could have been somewhere else, I hope so.   The area where this farm is located is still very rural, places that have not sold out to developers.  I hope that it remains so for the foreseeable future.

Compelled to Feed the Anna’s Hummingbird

The male Anna’s Hummingbird in the photo above was a regular visitor to my feeder last winter.  What a time it was with bubble wrapping the feeder and then hanging a light nearby to keep it warm because it was such a cold winter (for the Cowichan Valley anyway).  This year I told myself that I was not going to go through that stress of worrying about keeping the feeder from freezing.  As time has gone on and I keep hearing the Hummingbird clicking from the Deodara tree or seeing it on the lilac bush near where the feeder used to hang, or flying through the deck checking out a wind chime with a bird on it,  yesterday I could stand it no longer and hung the feeder up albeit in a different spot.  I was compelled to feed them again.  Now it is hanging under the roof on our deck where it cannot be rained or snowed on and where I hope it might be kept from direct freezing air.  It only took about 15 minutes and I saw a Hummingbird feeding from it.  Unlike where the feeder was hanging before, now I can see it through a window from a chair in which I read or watch TV.   Hopefully I will be able to photograph it through the window.